Crutches, scooters, toilet bars, toilet seat heighteners, suction cup baskets and handles, rubber stockings and shower chairs. The list is endless. So is the frustration.
Welcome to my world.
I have learned a lot this past week. Mostly that I’m a big baby when it comes to adapting to the idea that I can do very little for myself. This is what happens when you opt in for a bunionectomy.
There is a whole market of items out there that can be bought or rented for anyone who has any kind of health issue. Some of this stuff is pretty funny. Allow me to share.
Sitting on a toilet-seat heightener is less convenient than it sounds. You get this weird sensation that you will fall off the damn thing or that you might get a nose bleed if you sit there too long. Not to mention the overwhelming feeling of pathetic desperation that comes over you when you realize that you actually need the stupid thing.
Crutches are a must but you hope and pray every night that you will never need to use them. They are super uncomfortable, clumsy and the leading cause of suspected homicides. I just made that up, but it makes perfect sense to me.
When I was handed my scooter my heart leaped for joy. I’d much rather relive my childhood on a push scooter than hobble recklessly on crutches. That is, until I did. They are spiffy little devices on four wheels that consist of a knee pad and handlebars with hand brakes. They are clumsy to maneuver, awkward to get in and out of small rooms and they threaten to tip over if you lean too much one way or the other. Yet, I can’t live without it. I was told that the reason insurance companies will not cover the cost of the scooters is because they are considered unstable, undependable and somewhat reckless. Seriously? If that’s the criteria to qualify for insurance then half the people I know wouldn’t be eligible. Just saying.
The toilet bars are a gift from the Gods. A dear blogging friend of mine in Ohio, who shall remain nameless (thank you Marci Rich!) clued me into the little mentioned fact that when you go to the bathroom with one leg in a cast, you may never be seen again. Damn if she wasn’t right. She advised me about these golden rods of mercy (bars that straddle the toilet seat so you can brace yourself on one leg and get up) and I thank her (under my breath) at least a dozen times a day
I’m a big fan of my new shower chair. Crazy the things that make me happy these days. Although sitting down to shower leaves me feeling less like the sexy minx I think I am and more like an incapable old woman. It also leaves me safe while I have just one leg to stand on. You never know, I may just keep this fabulous contraption and have lazy shower day parties.
I’m super excited about my blue rubber boot that keeps my cast dry. Without it I would be taking bird baths for 6 weeks, and that wouldn’t be good for anybody. Of course, putting the damn thing on easily takes 2 people, and a half a bottle of tequila. This may have something to do with why I like it so much.
Living in a 2 story house is not optimal for anything. I’ve come to that conclusion the hard way. My way of transport from the top floor to the bottom is on my butt. This careful method was recommended to me by my physician, Dr. Dreamy. What I didn’t know is that once you get to the top of the stairs, you have no way of reaching the top landing. Yet another piece of valuable information given to me by Goddess Marci Rich. These are conversations I’m going to have with God when my time comes. People should have been constructed like cats, so we could leap from a standing position. I mean, let’s be serious here. What human hasn’t needed that ability?
Today I got my second cast put on. I chose bright pink for the color. I figure I want people to see me coming so they can proactively avoid the catastrophe that is headed their way. I also got my first glimpse of my new foot with all the stitches and screw sticking out of the side. It made me feel sad. My foot has been traumatized beyond belief and I sit here and complain how hard it is to get along without it for 6 weeks.
All of these contraptions have made my life bearable this past week, and I’m grateful for every one of them. I am also super grateful to have such an awesome doctor who is easy on the eyes and actually listens to my whining. I’m quite sure that Dr. Dreamy (aka Dr. Hurless) didn’t know the bundle of nerves and drama he was up against when I sashayed into his office. I’ve got to give the man a gold star.
But the best thing I’ve got going for me is the wonderful man who has been faced with a bit more than he could chew, but is still going at it. It’s been tough going (for both of us) and I can’t wait to get to the end of this road. But what I’m learning about myself and him, well, that’s the kind of stuff that makes for better people and stronger relationships.
What’s not to love about that?
Joan Cooper - Congratulations Tammy! I have some of those contraptions which I saved from the years with my bedridden mother. Thank goodness I have them. I could not live without the toilet chair. Why did they make toilets so low – you have to be athletic to sit and then stand from the average toilet. I wouldn’t be without my toilet seat and it does have handles. Scooter – no thanks. Crutches – impossible. Shower stool – I am looking for one. etc etc and I didn’t even have surgery.
Rubber stockings go on best with a ‘sock pull’. Do you have that?
Vicki Diamond - Who woulda thunk a bunionectomy would be so extreme. I do have to say your look darling in your pink cast! Here’s to a quick recovery! You and Steven are lucky to have each other! xoxo
Tammy - Hi Joan, YES, they are all marvelous inventions for a time like this. We got my shower chair at Home Depot. They have an entire section for gimpy people like me. I DO have a ‘sock pull’, his name is Steven. Hahahahahaaa.
Helene Cohen Bludman - Oh Tammy, you may not have mobility, but you have a sense of humor. Hopefully it will get you through these challenging times!
Tana Bevan - Tammy~On the bright side, this country uses lifted toilets. There are countries where the latrine consists of a hole in the ground/floor. (This inside of houses as well.) Such “facilities” are interesting enough to deal with when both legs are working. I hate to think of trying to maneuver that with one leg.
Sending healing thoughts your way. So glad your marvelous sense of humor remains intact! *Hugs*
Lynne - Yay for Marci! So glad she could help you! I remember being in a cast over 30 years ago…what a challenge! Best wishes for a speedy recovery!
Tammy - No kidding, Lynne! It takes a village, and I’m thrilled to have Marci in mine. Challenging? I’m thinking the show “Survivor” has nothing on me! Appreciate the read and the comment. Thanks for both!
Tammy - Hi Tana, I shudder to think! I don’t believe I would have an ounce of humor about a toilet that was a hole in the ground. Not an ounce! This challenge, however, is pathetically humorous. Kind of. Sometimes. Okay, mostly not, but let’s focus on the positive. Thanks for being here! Love you for that!
Carole Schultz - Love the way you have this extraordinary sense of humour, Tammy, to make things sound not quite so bad, when we know differently, but keep the chair I say! I still have my late husband’s chair in the shower; makes a nice change now and again!
Judy Freedman - Tammy, so sorry to hear about your cast…but I love the pink wrap and the toenails to match. You are stylish.
Tammy - Thanks, Carole. Yeah, it’s sometimes not so humorous. But looking on the brighter side of things sure beats the alternative. I am a fan of the shower chair, no doubt about it! Here’s hoping you use yours because you like it, NOT because you need it! Thanks for being here!
Tammy - Thanks, Judy. I wouldn’t wish a cast on my worst enemy. Well, maybe that. The toenail polish was just a coincidence. Who knew?!
Maureen Musgrave Armentrout - How is it that you can be sitting in a hospital bed, still looking fabulous?? Wishing you a speedy recovery!!
Linda Lichtman - You’re healing just the way I thought you would – rough and ready baby…xox
mel glenn - Dear Tammy,
At first I thought you were too hard on yourself, but your saving grace is humor. You are a trooper and can view a difficult life through the prism of seeing the funny side
of life. You will never be beaten. I admire what Lou Grant hated – Mary Richard’s spunk.
Jeri Rose Gelber - Omg I am living this right now! Six weeks of casts , shower seats and scoters have about done me in! I actually had a pin sticking out of my second toe until yesterday . Now I am in an ugly black boot and they told my I can start to try and walk! Easy for them to say! My foot looks like a road map with all the stitches.
Tammy - Hi Mel, only children are always hard on themselves. But the gift of being able to laugh at the madness is a wonderful thing to possess. Color me grateful! For the record, I am beaten quite often by life’s circumstance or the business process. None of that matters. Getting back in the game is what counts for me. And I do. I LOVED Mary Richards and Lou Grant. Remember how he always would say the word “spunk” (scowling) and how he hated it? Hahahaha! You are a treasure. Thanks for being here!
Marci Rich - Tammy, I’ve never been called a goddess in a blog before. You have made my day! I’m really glad I could help. And a word about those crutches: they’re impossible to use at this stage, but they will become useful when you’re finally able to put weight on the foot. Hang in there, kiddo!
Tam Warner Minton - I try to always view things through a humor prism….or, when I get down, to remind myself that others have it a whole lot worse! Perspective is something one has to keep acquiring, it seems!
Tammy - A Goddess you are, Miss Marci! Really? I will actually find the crutches useful? I do trust you and your vast experience in this tragic circumstance. Thank you for your gracious sharing. It will make the next 5 weeks so much easier! Your Tiara is waiting for you!
Alexandra Williams - When I had a screw put into my big toe last year, I was miserable because I was stuck in place. When I could finally get up, I immediately did seated workouts with my surgery leg up on the desk. I looked pitiful and felt that way too. But I was determined not to let one toe get the better of me. I feel for you, having a cast all the way to your knee. Kick some pink ass.
Tammy - I do so agree, Tam! Perspective is everything! Humor is a wonderful tool of life engagement that has been a big help to me throughout the years. Thank God for small favors! Happy to see you here. Thanks for that.
Cheryl Nicholl - I just want to apologize up front for laughing. This is not funny- but it kinda is. At least your telling of it. I have a strong feeling more hilarity is coming. Keep your chin-up kiddo. At least it’s not your wine bottle cork removing hand.
Haralee - I hope the time goes quickly. Your abs must be getting a great workout!
Katherines Corner - Bless your heart keep that sense of humor, its crucial! Hoping you are feeling better soon. Love the cast color! Hugs
Jeri Rose Gelber - Tammy, it will get better. I didn’t know my body could twist into so many different positions while on scooter. Try to angle the seats on scooter so your foot is more comfortable
Jeri Rose Gelber - It was my right foot so angle seat more towards left so you have more balance.
Jeri Rose Gelber - Where where did you have surgery?
Suerae Stein - Oh Tammy, you poor thing! But, you will be SOOOOO glad when all is said and done and you have a healed foot at your disposal. You will be all the more grateful because of all you have to go through. I wish you a full and fast recovery – with lots of that great humor that you have!
Tammy - Thanks, Haralee, I’m not at all sure my abs are getting any stronger but I’m betting I will be able to lift a truck by the time this is done. My upper arms are doing the work for my legs. Good grief! So very happy you stopped in for the read. Thanks for that.
Tammy - Katherine, hanging on to my sense of humor like a drowning man hangs on to a life raft … desperately! I didn’t even know casts came in colors. I thought they were all white. Who knew?!
Tammy - Hi Suerae, man oh man, I sure hope so. I have another foot that needs to get done and I literally cry when I think about having to go through this a second time. Nothing funny about that. I’m hoping you are right and I will be so pleased with the results that I will determine it is worth it. Fingers crossed. Thanks for stopping by and spreading a little cheer. So appreciate it!
Jeri Rose Gelber - No didn’t even feel pin being pulled! I asked doc if it was going to hurt and he told me he never had one pulled ! When he walked in with this huge pair of pliers I about freaked so hid head behind my husband back and next thing I know was doc saying it was out! Never wanted to see it but hubby told me it was a rod about six inches long with pin at end — so don’t freak cuz it was painless- you said you had surgery on OT – not sure where that is cuz I live in Florida . Don’t worry you get used to all the stuff you have to do and it gets easier.
Elena Dillon - So sorry!! I had shoulder surgery in October and it was a humbling experience. I’m not a fan of asking for help either. I just kept telling myself I was growing my character. Lol. Feel better soon!
Carol Cassara - I love your attitude & aspire to have it myself, should I find my aging body parts in a cast. I hope I don’t but you never know…having your grace and humor would be the only way to get through it!
Tammy - Hi Elena, shoulder surgery is the worst. But I have to say, I think foot surgery tops it. We must belong to the same ‘Club of Stubborn’. I feel you. I keep needing to know that I can ‘do it’. When in fact, many times, I just can’t. A life lesson on learning to lean on those you love. So happy to find you here! Thanks for that.
Tammy - Hi Carol, you are too kind and sweet. Thank you. I’m a big fan of humor and long for the grace. Sometimes it’s there, and sometimes, not so much. I get by. I, too, hope you NEVER go through anything like this. Beyond awful. Appreciate the read … and you.
Jeri Rose Gelber - Sorry about pin – at least you don’t have to worry about hitting it any more- I was so scared I would hit it and it would go further in.like yours did-
Cynthia Greene Jordan - I just Love the pink cast to match the piggies! Glad you’re doing better and thanks for the detailed picture you sent of your foot, sans cast. I DID enjoy it.
Susie (The Esthetic Goddess) - I love your attitude and humor! My kind of gal! You are rockin’ that pink boot!
Tammy - Hi Susie, thanks for the peppy support. Hobbling the pink boot would be more like it. So happy to popped in for the read. Thanks for that!
Kellie - Like the pink.. Matches your eyes… Well maybe not. 😉